Industry

Hyundai teaches first-time car owners how to ‘Do It Yourself’

by Mayank Dhingra Aug 15, 2017

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Hyundai's India Quality Centre in Faridabad is driving a new dynamic in the country by offering first-time car owners insight into the basics of a vehicle, its features and how to keep it running smoothly in a bid to ensure a happy ownership experience. 

The India Quality Centre (INQC), established as a greenfield facility in the Faridabad region of the National Capital Region is connecting with first-time car buyers in an innovative manner. Hyundai Motor India has started a training initiative, christened ‘Do It Yourself’ to engage directly with its customers.

The company has been targeting first-time car owners from its pool of customers, which is growing at a monthly rate of over 40,000 cars, and aims to impart training to make them aware as well as self-reliant about the need for better upkeep of their Hyundais. 

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Customers, who are being brought in every alternate Saturday under this programme, to be given an insight into the basics of a vehicle, its features and its maintenance aspects, has been in place since June, only about a month into the commencement of INQC’s functioning on April 28.

The INQC facility is spread over 72,000 square feet and is a state-of-the-art multi-disciplinary unit, which incorporates a Quality Centre, Training Centre as well as Parts Quality Centre, under the same roof.

Hyundai’s vision in bringing together the three major cross-functional market quality operations was to also bring the INQC out of the bounds of the company’s main manufacturing premises in Chennai, so as to cater to the geographic challenges offered by the Indian sub-continent, and improve product quality, to achieve its target of building ‘Zero Defect’ products, by understanding varied customer needs in different parts of the country.

As an extension of its main purpose, the company immediately also decided to utilise the high-end facility in connecting better with its customers, starting with first-time car buyers and making them well-versed with what could otherwise be extremely intimidating subjects for a fresh car user, in terms of owning a car.

The two-hour DIY training, in a batch of 20 such customers on a Saturday includes a classroom session, live demonstrations and hands-on practical training of important vehicle upkeep aspects like checking of engine oil level, coolant level, topping up of wiper washer fluid, tyre health monitoring, and other related basic maintenance areas, so as to help them get to know their cars better and be prepared to handle any situation should the need arise. The training also incorporates insight into the various usable features of a customer’s car as well as useful tips on good driving habits to derive the maximum fuel efficiency out of their vehicles. Roadside assistance, benefits of extended warranty and insurance
options being offered by the company are also explained to the customers as part of the programme.

Hyundai has been reaching out to new customers for the DIY programme through its dealers in the Delhi- NCR region and with the sessions being conducted twice a month, with two batches each, on every such Saturday, the company has already trained around 134 customers.

According to S Punnaivanam, AVP, Unit Head Service, Hyundai Motor India, “We have taken this conscious decision of using the state-of-the art INQC to make first-time car owners comfortable with their vehicles. Teaching customers by utilising the proper equipment and facility at the premises allows us to ensure that thorough and in-depth training is imparted to make them aware of the various features and working of their cars. We intend to continue the programme for the later part of the year as well.”

With this campaign, the company is taking a similar path to other carmakers like Ford India, which have been quite aggressive with their customer engagements, successfully driving across
the message of low servicing costs of their products. 

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SNEAK PEEK INTO THE INQC
The integrated INQC, which sees an investment of Rs 30 crore, incorporates a world-class training centre, equipped with an integrated body and paint training shop as well, which is the fifth regional centre to have such a setup, in Hyundai India’s total pool of six at the moment. Two more are slated to come up in Guwahati and Ahmedabad.

According to Punnaivanam, “The land for these establishments has already been acquired and the construction work is slated to commence soon to make them functional by the end of CY2017.”

Since inception, the centre has given hands-on experience to 1,704 dealer trainees till date, providing them thorough knowledge on various curriculum subjects, including technical training, body and paint training, and sales training. The centre deploys 61 engineers from various fields relevant to the automotive space and people with a minimum of five years of experience in their areas of core competencies are working in major key roles.

The centre comes equipped with high-end quality analyzing tools such as electron microscope, NVH chamber, CAN analyzer, endoscope, 3D CMM, wheel alignment machine and a 3D scanner to name a few. The INQC, along with the part centre, will also be responsible for quality assurance for all the exports being done by the company in the APAC region. To further speed up problem response and countermeasure initiation times, the facility also sees around 10 vendors from Korea, including PSC Valeo, Doowan and Hanon Automotive Systems, have their representatives positioned inside the premises itself, to react to consumer complaints quickly. 

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INQC’S SUPPORT IN NEW MODEL TESTING
The centre, with its highend testing and quality assurance equipment has also been given the role of undertaking the various stages of vehicle testing for the company’s upcoming models, wherein it will be directly involved in carrying out various dynamic and all-terrain testing of these under-development cars.

The upcoming new Hyundai Verna sedan is one such model to have received full support from the stateof- the-art centre in its development and on-road testing under varying conditions. Hyundai Motor India, which services around 53 lakh vehicles annually, across its 1,253-strong workshop network in the country, aims to grow at 8 percent in FY2017-18. It currently employs around 7,300 technicians and 3,300 service advisors and has switched nearly 220 of its service centres, most having service volumes of more than 400 cars a month, to complete digital and paperless customer service and repair job initiation systems, utilising its GDS online interface. 

This article was first published in the August 1, 2017 issue of Autocar Professional 

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